The crowd was large and loud and many of the rallies long Thursday night as the Dunsmuir High School volleyball team defeated Tulelake and clinched at least a share of its first Evergreen League championship in nearly 30 years.
Thrilled Tiger players swarmed each other and were greeted on the court by members of the football team after capping a 3-1 vistory over the Honkers with a 25-22 win in game four. Dunsmuir finished EL play with a 9-1 record and will win the title outright if Tulelake (8-1) loses to Big Valley Tuesday.
Dunsmuir coach Lisa Kirch said keys to the win included great hitting by Clara Weld, Chelsea Helms and Marki Stibi, "consistently great work" by setter Jessica Hatten, and consistent serving.
"It felt good to finish it off and not go to a fifth game," said Kirch, whose team lost at Tulelake earlier in the season, 3-2.
Kirch said Tiger players "were completely psyched and high energy" going into the match, which was delayed in order to allow time for one of the officials to get through the slowed traffic on Interstate 5.
She said the support from football players and other fans helped keep the energy high during the match, which the Tigers won 26-24, 25-16, 23-25, 25-22.